*In 2000 Congress passed the Drug Addiction Treatment Act (DATA) which amended the Controlled Substances Act to permit physicians to treat opioid addiction using schedules III-V FDA approved narcotic drug products without having to obtain a separate DEA registration as a narcotic treatment program. Those registered with the DEA as DATA waived physicians could treat 30 or 100 patients at any one time.
In 2016 Congress passed the Comprehensive Addiction and Recovery Act (CARA) which amended the Controlled Substances Act to permit nurse practitioners and physician assistants registered with the DEA to also treat opioid addiction based on state authority.
In 2016, the Department of Health and Human Services published a Federal Register Notice which increased the patient limitation to 275 for physicians.
For the full definition of Qualifying Practitioner, please see S.524, Public Law 114-198, the Comprehensive Addiction and Recovery Act of 2016. This law amended the Controlled Substances Act to include the term “qualifying other practitioner”.
The term “qualifying practitioner” means –
(I) a qualifying physician, as defined in clause (ii); or
(II) during the period beginning on the date of enactment of the Comprehensive Addiction Recovery Act of 2016 and ending on October 1, 2021, a qualifying other practitioner, as defined in clause (iv).
(iv) The term “qualifying other practitioner” means a nurse practitioner or physician assistant who satisfies each of the following........